Life Scenes of a Confederate Soldier

C1: 011
ca.1865
12 lithographic cards, 2 x 3 inches

C1: 011  Life Scenes of a Confederate Soldier  (LVA  11_1148_002) C1: 011  Life Scenes of a Confederate Soldier  (LVA  11_1148_004)

The mild pastels of these lithographic novelty cards belie their content, which is uncharacteristically downbeat for Southern wartime images. They feature Dixie caricatures populating scenes of defeat and despair, such as a man in gray—who appears to be lonesome, cold, and hungry—reminiscing about the “good times” of 1861. Most of these “life scenes” are not historically specific. “A Flank Movement” visually puns military action, showing a hungry soldier armed with a stiletto stalking an oblivious pig. “Heroes Still,” apparently a post-War scene, or one anticipating the fruits of pursuing a lost cause, shows humbled white Southerners tilling their own fields. Other scenes include “In a Bad Place,” “First Winter,” “Homesick,” “In the Trenches,” “The Vidette,” “The Camp Darkey,” “Following Stonewall,” and a sea battle captioned “No. 290.” The cards were originally held together into a dainty, homemade fascicle, fashioned from sackcloth, which includes the handwritten title of the collection along with an almost indecipherable name written in pencil: “Hope Stewart.” C1: 011  Life Scenes of a Confederate Soldier (LVA 11_1148_001)C1: 011  Life Scenes of a Confederate Soldier  (LVA  11_1148_003)

Provenance:
Donated, 1951

References:
Six of the images were reproduced in Cavalcade (winter, 1951).

2 Comments

  1. Jeffrey Ruggles said:
    10 September 2011 at 6:30 pm

    The artist for these cards was William Ludwell Sheppard, a Richmond artist and Confederate veteran. They were produced after the war, probably in emulation of a wartime series by Winslow Homer (see ).

  2. Kenny Williams said:
    12 September 2011 at 4:31 pm

    Do you know if other “Life Scenes” card sets are held in other collections, and if they’ve been positively identified as Sheppard’s? Also, specifically which Homer series are you referring to?

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